Friday, September 5, 2008

So, How Do You Do This Again?

I have so much to learn about blogging, and CrimeSpace friends, and social sites. I know that learning new things – any new things -- is good. I take classes and practice ways to learn new things all the time. But with this stuff I get so anxious because I can’t seem to figure out how it all works. I don’t know how to connect with others, so I feel lost, writing a blog in a vacuum. It makes me sympathize with my mother and mother-in-law, and wonder how they’ve handled all the changes they’ve seen in their lifetimes.

Especially my mother-in-law, Biji. Biji comes from a rural village in India, from an ultra conservative family, where the girls were never allowed to leave the walled compound of the extended family home. An aunt who married into the family and had some education took it upon herself to teach the girls the alphabet and start them with reading and writing. That was it until she married at age sixteen, when her husband continued teaching her to read and write Hindi.

In the late sixties, when I met and married her oldest son, even urban India was still considered by some Indian economists to be fifty years behind the U.S. economically and industrially (It has certainly done a good bit of catching up since then). So imagine this woman moving from such a secluded upbringing, to marrying a man in public service with the social obligations that involves, to living with a son in the even more advanced University Professor’s life after her husband died, and eventually with other sons in the modern day United States. She is totally at a loss as to how I used the computer to get Indian food delivered to my house in Traverse City, Michigan, where she is visiting me. Probably as lost as I am about how to get my blog connected with other blogs.

One big difference: While she has made strides the size of which few of us will ever need, she does seem to have reached her satiation point. I’m not there yet. I WILL figure it out eventually. If you’ve asked me to be a “friend”, be patient. Allow me a few anxiety attacks and a little more time and soon I’ll be wondering what I was so worked up about.

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